Posts Tagged ‘HISTORY’


The United States is entering a new phase to its’ life.  For years we have seen the individual citizen’s ability to control its’ future erode while centralized control has taken the place of entrepreneurial spirit.  While this has made it easier for some to live a life where decisions were nurtured in Washington, it has made it a challenge for individuals to start something new and then grow that thought into a viable expanding endeavor.   Like a pendulum in a clock that has swung too far the pendulum is now swinging in the other direction and as centralized control wanes we will be discovering a renaissance of what built America and then witness a rebirth of the United States.

The United States has neighbors to the south that offers great opportunities for bilateral agreements, massive renewable natural resources and a potential workforce in need of training and education.  This geographical area that offers so much potential is Central and South America.

Central and South America were initially inhabited by native indigenous people when Christopher Columbus came to America.  In the European’s desire for riches, these Central and South Americans Indians were systematically destroyed, enslaved or forced to succumb to mandatory physical and religious change.  Great nations such as the Inca, Aztec and Maya were reduced to a mere footnote in history books while the European colonial powers, specifically Spain and Portugal, changed the face of the new continent.

Over time the countries of the South gained their independence and broke into smaller countries and eventually established national boundaries.  America was not the perfect partner in some situations as government meddling took place.  Instability on the continent led to a different and more menacing growth of communism as revolutionaries such as Che Guevara spewed its’ anti-American rhetoric while unleashing revolution across the region. Communistic forms of government diminished as that form of rule collapsed with the disintegration of the Soviet Union and the inability of Cuba to support governments within the Caribbean and Central America.  Slowly dictators were overthrown and in some cases, like Noriega of Panama, were imprisoned in American penitentiaries.  Drug lords replaced unscrupulous dictators in many countries and they too have been overthrown in many countries.

The majority of South American countries were not as tumultuous going into the 20th Century as the die-hard dictatorships.  Industries did flourish.  When I was working in Saudi Arabia it was Brazilian Volkswagen that was being sold and continued with the “bug” long after it was discontinued in the United States and Germany stopped to manufacture the popular vehicle.  Brazil and Venezuela had massive oil exports.  While Brazil followed a democratic government, Venezuela adopted dictatorial anti-American rule and Venezuela will be collapsed soon.  General Motors closed its’ plant recently amid chaos and anarchy.

South America represents the greatest future potential for expanded development and pro-American improvement in the world.   This is a bold statement.  There is a labor force waiting to be brought out of the dirt streets and mountains of a beautiful continent.  There are governments that genuinely desire to improve the lots of their countries.  There are boundless tracs of land that can be improved without destroying.    There is a populous that desire warm and friendly relationships with it neighbor of the north, The United States.

As South and Central America grow they will provide goods and services that the United States cannot or does not desire to produce.  At the same time as the countries develop and grow, American goods and services will flow south.  As this partnership grows a good friend and ally will be even stronger south of the border.  South and Central America has the potential to be the best friend for America  with the gre


In March of 1967 I was a gangly sophomore at Farmerville High. That month Farmerville held its 125 anniversary. The three day event was full of events that culminated with a dance at the high school gym. Art shows, flower shows, forest exhibits, a temporary museum, parade, banquets, variety show, the Miss Farmerville Pageant, and air show and the Centenary Choir welcomed residents and visitors to this magnificent pageant. People wore vintage clothing and the town was vibrant with all the festivities. The organizers got this celebration right. One of the souvenirs that was available was the 125th Anniversary Souvenir Program. This was produced by the anniversary sponsors and mushc of the history of Farmerville is captured in the document. Lets take a look at a section called “Firsts in Farmerville and Later Progress”. According to the document the first telephone south of the Mason-Dixon line was brought to Farmerville by Col. Daniel Stein. He had seen the invention while visiting New York and brought three of these to Farmerville. first automobile hit Farmerville in 1911 and cost $1,050. Mail service began in 1840. Six years after the first car came to Farmerville, the first traffic laws were passed in 1917. In 1954 parking meters were introduced to the down town section of Farmerville and netted an average of $100.00. I can still see Miss Lilly Silmon pushing a cart around town empting the parking meters in her sheriff’s deputy uniform. The first water system was contracted to be built in 1922. Water was piped from a Whiteman-Decker Mill on the Marion highway to the school and then into town. Later water was provided from a series of deep wells. Street lights were installed in 1914 and the installers were allowed to use 40 watt light bulbs. Gas was brought into Farmerville in 1927 and residents could then have access to gas for heating and cooking. The health unit was formed in 1936. Its first director was Dr. J.G Norris who left in 1938 to enter private practice. Among his many accomplishments he brought my wife into the world in 1955. The first marriage license was issued in 1839. The groom signed his name but the bride had to sign with an “X”. The W.G. Turnage store was an early entry in the Farmerville business community. It sat on the corner of Main and East Franklin. Across the street to the north was the Farmerville Mercantile. This is currently the parking lot across the street from Community Trust Bank. The Farmerville Mercantile was chartered in 1913. Union Parish provided four governors. Two Louisiana governors were from Shiloh and went to school at Farmerville. Homesville and Oakland each provided governors for Arkansas. “It was noted that in 1967 practically all the business houses are brick and new ones have been built in the last ten years, giving the town a neat, progressive appearance.” Farmerville will celebrate its 175th anniversary in five years. Lets hope that the spirit that made the 125th anniversary such a resounding success will be with us then.